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Guns blaze near VIP

Midnapore, April 4: Security forces engaged Maoists in an encounter in a forest on the West Midnapore-Bankura border around the time P. Chidambaram was visiting Lalgarh town, 30km away.

Sixty personnel from the CRPF and state police had gone into the jungles of Rupghagra in Goaltore following a tip-off that a Maoist group led by Sidhu Soren, also a secretary of the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities, had taken shelter there.

Around 5am, the forces were travelling along the metalled road that cuts through the jungle and connects Sarenga (Bankura) with Goaltore (West Midnapore) when they spotted a gang. “The police chased the rebels who started firing from behind trees,” said West Midnapore police chief Manoj Verma. The exchange of fire continued for over four hours.

Maoists killed CPM branch committee member Partha Biswas, 28, in West Midnapore’s Binpur this evening.

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